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Christopher L.C.E. Witcombe
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Christopher L.C.E. Witcombe


The Course
    An introduction to how we look at, analyze and understand both art and ‘non-art’ images encountered in everyday experience
    The aim of the course is to provide the means to understand images, both still and moving, real and imagined. In order to do this, it is necessary to examine the sense of sight and the role of the brain in the construction of the visual experience

Meeting Place and Time

  • Pannell 012: Tuesdays and Thursdays 3:00-4:15


Student Responsibilities

  • Exercise 1: Visual and Perceptual Analysis
    Select ONE object within a preferred grouping of images in the exhibition "Exploring the Visual Experience" in Pannell Gallery and write a two-part, 10–page paper

    • Part 1 (7 pages): Examine the selected object and write an analysis covering the following issues and areas:
      1. Seeing (your own initial visual encounter)
      2. Looking (recount how you 'looked' at the image in terms of eye movement, attractive features, visual interest, visual attention)
      3. Impressions (derived from color, line, shape, texture, space, shading, and illusion)
      4. Associations (recognition and identification, interpretation of visual information)

    • Part 2 (3 pages): Provide a discussion of how the object you have selected both visually and perceptually fits with or relates to two other objects in the group. Discuss similarities and differences in terms of Impressions and Associations

    • Prepare a five-minute summary of your analysis for oral presentation to the class in front of your selected object in Pannell Gallery

  • Exercise 2: Image Study and Analysis
    Select TWO examples of ‘commercial’ advertising. One example should be a still image, such as an advertisement in a magazine, and the other example a moving image, such as a short television-type commercial. Write a two-part, 10–page paper

    • Part 1 (7 pages): Analyse each example separately in the following ways:

      1. Seeing and Looking: How did the image(s) in each example catch your attention?
      2. Impressions: Comment on the use color, line, shape, texture, space in terms of their use in creating an effective or appropriate image
      3. Associations: Identify the types of visual information employed (identifiable objects and/or figures) and analyse their place and role in the composition of each example.
      4. Visual Effectiveness: Consider the intent or purpose of the overall content and composition of each example — sell a product, tell a story, provide information or educate, entertain, promote pleasure or delight, attract or seduce — and then discuss how the examples are effective in this regard.

    • Part 2 (3 pages): Write a critical analysis of your visual experience describing your own response to each example in both visual and psychological terms. In particular, identify the parts and/or overall composition that you found most interesting or provocative, and explain why they affected you in this way. Comment, too, on the parts and/or overall concept in the portrayal or representation of women, and/or an emphasis on male violence.

    • Prepare a five-minute summary of your analysis of your selected still image for oral presentation in the classroom using digital sources for your selected examples

  • Presentation: A Visual Experience Analysed
    Third Exercise


  • Each Exercise = 30%
  • Presentation = 40%

Office and Hours

  • Pannell 04: Tuesdays 2:15-3:00 and by appointment
  • phone: 6194
  • email:


  • Attendance at every class meeting is expected. If you expect to be absent for whatever reason, notify me ahead of time
  • Each absence without prior notification will result in a lowering of your final grade
  • Chronic absence will be noted and reported